Paris Club pardons substantial amount of Sao Tome and Principe’s debt

25 May 2007

Paris, France, 25 May – The Paris Club, a body that brings together 19 creditor countries, Thursday decided to write off a substantial part of the debt owed by Sao Tome and Principe, valued at a total of US$24.5 million, the organization said in a statement.

In a statement issued in the French capital, the Paris Club said that creditors had decided to pardon US$23.9 million of Sao Tome’s debt, leaving it with an outstanding balance of US$600,000.

The Club said that creditors have also pledged to provide additional relief for the debt to be totally pardoned.

The members of the Paris Club applauded the determination of the country in “applying a global strategy for reducing poverty,” and to put into place an economic program favoring growth.

The deputy prime minister and minister of planning of Sao Tome and Principe, Maria Torres, present at the Paris Club meeting, pledged to use the debt relief to reduce poverty in her country.

According to the statement, Sao Tome and Principe’s total foreign debt is valued at US$294 million.

Germany, Belgium, Spain, France and Russia were the members of the Paris Club that took part in the debt relief meeting and Canada, the United States, Italy and Japan took part in the meeting as observers. (macauhub)